Farm Progress

IL Corn reveals another E85 pump. Farmers may nominate their local school district for STEM project grant dollars.

March 9, 2017

3 Min Read
E85 FUN FACT: E85 use reduces ozone-forming pollution by 20% and life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 30%.gsermek/iStock/Thinkstock

E85 pump at new Knoxville Love’s Travel Stop

Love’s Travel Stops opened its newest location in Knoxville on Feb. 16 and held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the company’s first E85 flex-fuel pump.

“Building corn demand is our No. 1 job here at the Illinois corn checkoff program,” says Jim Raben, Illinois Corn Marketing Board chairman. “We’re happy to see that the ethanol fuel market in Illinois is expanding by one more flex-fuel dispenser in an area of the state where motorists haven’t had many options until recently.”

E85 can only be used in flex-fuel vehicles. E85 users at this new location at Exit 51 on Interstate 74 will support their local economy by purchasing fuel sourced from Big River Resources Inc., an ethanol plant in Galva that uses corn produced in Knox County.

“We’re especially glad to see Love’s Travel Stops entering the marketplace with flex fuel. We’re sure that their customers will quickly turn to the higher ethanol blend as a way to fuel up with a high-performance fuel that supports the local economies at an attractive price point,” Raben says.

Source: IL Corn

Nominate your school district for STEM project grants

The number of jobs with an emphasis in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) is expected to grow significantly over the next 10 years, according to the National Science and Math Initiative. The America’s Farmers Grow Rural Education program offers farmers the opportunity to nominate their Illinois public schools for opportunities to receive $10,000 and $25,000 grants to help K-12 educators enhance their STEM curriculum.

Last year, 13 Illinois organizations received funding:

• Ford County, GCMS CUSD 5, Improving Science Instruction Through Hands-on Learning Experiences, $10,000

• Pike County, Griggsville-Perry CUSD 4, STEM Outdoor Classroom With Pollinator Garden, $10,000

• Franklin County, Sesser-Valier CUSD 196, Transforming Science and Agricultural Education With 3-D Virtual Reality, $10,000

• DeKalb County, Hinckley Big Rock CUSD 429, Orchard, $10,000

• Crawford County, Hutsonville CUSD 1, Math and Science Come to Life, $10,000

• Adams County, Payson CUSD 1, Make It Green! $10,000

• Macoupin County, Southwestern Community School District 9, Enhancing Rural Education With Math and Technology, $25,000

• Whiteside County, River Bend School District 2, Redesigning Science Labs for STEM Using the Engineering Design Process, $10,000

• Champaign County, Champaign CUSD 4, Engineering Design in 3-D, $10,000

• Saline County, Galatia, Galatia Science Lab, $25,000

• DeKalb County, Sandwich CUSD, Project Ecology 2017, $10,000

• Henry County, Cambridge Unit School District 227, Growing Science Education Through Greenhouse Laboratory, $25,000

• Fayette County, Brownstown CUSD 201, Equipping Students for Success, $10,000

To qualify for a Grow Rural Education grant, farmers in eligible counties must nominate an eligible rural public school district to compete for a merit-based grant of either $10,000 or $25,000. Farmers can nominate their school district until April 1. After the school district receives a nomination, administrators and teachers will design a grant that enhances STEM education in their district. Nominated school districts will have until April 15 to submit a grant application describing their project. A farmer advisory council will review finalist applications and select the winning school districts.

To nominate a local school district for one of the Grow Rural Education grants and to see a complete list of program rules and eligibility information, go to

Source: The Monsanto Fund

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